Elizabeth “Libby” Mary Kew Wilson died peacefully on Thursday, August 10, 2023 at the Blake in Charlottesville. Born April 24, 1931, in Kingsville Maryland, a village in Baltimore County. Libby is preceded in death by her late husband of 59 years Robert Alan “Bob” Wilson, her mother Mary Kew and her beloved “Aunt Bessie”, Elizabeth Richardson. Libby is survived by her three children Beau, Mark, and Susie, nine grandchildren; Frances, Katherine, Emily, Riley, Morgan, Will, Michael, Chris, and Sam and six great grandchildren; Romeo, Olivia, Charlie, Nora, Andrew, and Theo.
Libby grew up in Maryland on her grandparents’ farm, raised by her Aunt Bessie who she referred to as mother. From a young age, she loved school, which would later influence her life as an educator. She had fond memories of riding her bike with her cousins and friends and playing with her Scottie dog, Blinkie. She attended The Friends School in Baltimore, where she first met her husband, Bob. She later attended Bradford College, and then The University of Virginia, which she graduated from. Libby and Bob were married in Baltimore on November 14, 1952. They settled in Charlottesville, VA and later moved to Keswick. The years in the Keswick community were filled with wonderful friends and fun times. Anyone that knew Libby and Bob would have difficulty saying one name without the other. They were an exceptional team.
Both Libby and Bob were public school teachers and in 1963 founded The Little Keswick School. Now named The Keswick School, the small school they started on their farm has grown into a prominent therapeutic boarding school for boys. Libby fulfilled the roles of teacher and administrator all while raising a family of three children. Together Bob and Libby worked as a team and their efforts changed many young boys’ lives.
Libby loved traveling the world with Bob, often taking along friends in her later years. She especially loved sharing her travels with her grandchildren, teaching them about the countries and cultures they visited. She was fond of sending postcards to her grandchildren from the many places they travelled, which are still held dearly by them today. From a young age, Libby had a penchant for education which she carried and shared through her whole life.
Libby had many dear canine companions in her time. Some of her other passions included her flower garden, planted by her late mother Bessie at Libby and Bob’s home in Keswick, and her keen eye for antique stores. Libby and Bob also spent many summer days at their beach house in Hatteras, North Carolina where Libby commanded a presence over the VHF radio to ensure Bob and company stayed safe and returned home on time from their fishing adventures. Her impressive organizational skills and talent for lists worked well to keep everyone on track. She also knew the secret to real Maryland crab cakes.
Libby will be remembered as a loving and committed partner to Bob, mother to Beau, Mark, and Susie, and “Gran” to her grandchildren. To all that knew her, she was a beautifully smart, strong, and insightful woman who wore an infectious smile matched only by that of her husband Bob.
The family would very much like to thank her dear friends Pearl Washington and Norma Ballheim for all the years of compassion and friendship as well as the loving care from the staff at The Blake in Charlottesville in recent years.
In lieu of flowers gifts can be made to The Grace Episcopal Church Historical Preservation Fund, PO Box 43, Keswick, VA 22947, The Keswick School P.O. Box 24, Keswick, VA 22947, The Charlottesville Albemarle SPCA or a charity of your choice.
Private graveside service.
Condolences may be shared with her family on the Tribute Wall.